City of SLO PCC

How It All Began

The City of San Luis Obispo’s Promotional Coordinating Committee (PCC) is a seven-member advisory committee to the City Council, and its mission is to improve the quality of life for San Luis Obispo residents and visitors, and to promote the city as a regional tourist and recreational center. Verdin was selected initially to design, print and distribute a bi-annual events brochure that highlights various events occurring in the city of San Luis Obispo. In 2013 Verdin recommended the creation of a custom mobile application created specifically for the SLO Happenings program to target residents and visitors to San Luis Obispo. The goal was to launch the app and have a minimum of 1,500 downloads by the end of the first year.

Our Approach

Verdin researched events apps that were being utilized by other major cities, and put together a strategy to make the app successful and popular. Knowing that the target audience included both locals and tourists, Verdin planned for a design that was family-friendly and inviting. In response, a soft color palette was created that was easy to relate to and that also reflected the outdoorsy and relaxed vibes of San Luis Obispo. Events fell into five main categories: Arts & Culture, Food & Wine, Social & Recreation, Ongoing Events, and Happenings This Week. The app was launched in conjunction with the popular SLO Film Festival on March 7, 2014. Social media support, in-app digital banner ads and promotional cards were created to support the launch and generate downloads.

What Happened

The three key metrics were used to measure the success of the app: number of downloads, number of page views and the number of sessions (each time someone uses the app). In just nine months, the app received more than 4,800 downloads (320% of goal), 21,414 page views, and more than 20,000 sessions. It listed almost 500 events and had a returning visitor rate of 80%. The app continues to grow in popularity and success, reaching over 10,200 downloads by July 1, 2015. Verdin received the Award of Excellence from PRSA in 2014 for the SLO Happenings App.

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